Music has a long history of crossing genres and surprising fans with unexpected collaborations that have become hit songs and/or guilty pleasures. Few would have ever expected to see Ice T portray a member of the NYPD on Law & Order SVU, or Snoop Dogg team up with Martha Stewart.

When it comes to dropping a new track, there have been plenty of unexpected team-ups over the years, often resulting in some of the biggest chart-topping hits. While crossing over genres is not as wacky and unexpected as it once was, there are still some team-ups that surprise fans.

Run DMC and Aerosmith – Walk This Way

The original version of this song could be found on Aerosmith’s 1975 album Toys in the Attic, but very few make that connection. Over a decade later, RUN DMC and the Boston rockers would collaborate to make one of the greatest hip-hop/rock tracks of all time. Not only would the remake revitalize Aerosmith’s career, but it would introduce the trio from Hollis, Queens to a more mainstream audience.

Jay Z and Linkin Park – Collision Course Album

Highlighted by the single “Numb/Encore”, this 2004 mashup album stemmed from a performance by the New York rapper and the hard rock band at the 2004 MTV Video Music Awards. Featuring just six tracks, the EP featured some of the best from the respective artists involved. The album would help launch Jay-Z into the mainstream spotlight as although his individual albums sold well, none were on the level of Linkin Park’s Hybrid Theory.

Kanye West, Rihanna and Paul McCartney – FourFiveSeconds

What do you get when you mix an award-winning rapper, an award-winning pop star, and an award-winning pop/rocker? A chart-topping hit song of course. Bringing together artists from different genres and different generations is always tricky, but the versatile trio seemed to have little problem experiencing different sounds and styles in order to make a chart-topping track.

Nice & Smooth and NKOTB – Dirty Dawg

Arguably the biggest boyband ever, New Kids on the Block had spent a couple of years out of the spotlight only to return to the studio in 1993 for their fifth album, “Face the Music.” Looking for a more mature image from their traditional “bubblegum” approach, the group not only altered their name but also looked to add a little street cred to their name, teaming with New York rappers Nice & Smooth.

Public Enemy and Anthrax – Bring The Noise

Just as free casino games offer players the opportunity to explore new experiences, unexpected rap collaborations continue to push the boundaries of hip hop and give music lovers of all genres a unique experience. Few would have thought a politically charged rap group and a thrash metal band would work so well, but the 1997 collaboration between Public Enemy and Anthrax helped bridge the gap between the two genres. Public Enemy’s frontman Chuck D would first become familiar with Anthrax’s Scott Ian after the rapper saw him wearing a PE shirt during a festival in Britain. First featured on the soundtrack “Less than Zero”, the popular pump- up song would later be released as a single before appearing on Public Enemy’s 1998 album “Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back”.

Eminem and Elton John – Stan

Detroit rapper Eminem is no stranger to controversy or making an iconic moment. When Elton John walked onto the stage during Eminem’s 2001 performance at the 43rd Annual Grammy Awards, he would fill in for British pop star Dido and create one of the most shocking moments in music history. After making headlines for various homophobic lyrics and comments, by welcoming John to collaborate on the performance the duo broke down sexual discrimination barriers and became a pivotal moment in Eminem’s career.

Kendrick Lamar and Taylor Swift – Bad Blood

It comes as little surprise that when two of the most popular artists of their genre and generation come together an award-winning hit would be the result. However, that still doesn’t mean that fans weren’t surprised when Kendrick Lamar and pop queen Taylor Swift got together for the 2014 track. Telling the tale of betrayal and backstabbing by a close friend, many fans believed that the song was about Swift’s relationship with fellow pop star Katy Perry.

Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus – Old Town Road

Six months after the original was released, the collaboration remix version would become a chart-topping hit around the world. While Lil Nas X was a relatively unknown rapper in 2018, Billy Ray Cyrus was a country music legend. In addition to having a nearly thirty-year age gap, the two artists who were at different stages of their respective careers, with the rapper looking for his breakthrough moment and the country star in the twilight of his performing years, the duo created a track that would quickly turn from a viral sensation into a chart-topping, award-winning hit.

O.D.B and Mariah Carey – Fantasy (Remix)

A musical version of Beauty and the Beast, the 1995 collaboration between Wu-Tang Clan member O.D.B and pop star Mariah Carey shocked fans of both genres. As the lead single to “Daydream”, Carey’s fifth studio album, the track made the pop star the first female artist to debut at the top of the Hot 100 chart. Initially, Columbia Records was hesitant to allow Carey to team with the rapper out of concern it would ruin her image and the album’s success.